The neighborhood's primary objection to the city's proposed bikeway changes are due to safety concerns. The Meadow residents, many of which are bicyclists, agree with the proposed changes to five of the six plan segments. They're only opposed to the proposed changes on East Meadow Drive from Middlefield Road to Louis Lane. With the exception of the recently added "too-small" roundabout at Ross, this segment is a safe bikeway. Currently, there are wide bike lanes bordered by solid white lines to separate bicyclists from motorists and parking. With rare exception, cars park well within the solid white line, minimizing the chance of "dooring" bikers.
The roundabout is too small for fire trucks and other long vehicles to make a left turn. The serious safety problem is that white arrows in the bike path just before the roundabout direct bikers into the motorist lane without any warning, to bikers or motorists, that they are merging. This is an accident waiting to happen.
Removing parking from the south side creates two additional safety problems:
1: It'll double the cars on the north side, which students use in the morning to rush to school. The change will significantly increase the number of car doors opening and cars backing and pulling out across the bike lane at this busy time.
2: Ramos Park is heavily used for children due to the playground and after-school K-2 sports. The park doesn't have a parking lot, so parents park on the south side so their children don't have to cross four lanes of bike and motorist traffic. Removing south side parking will create a significant safety problem.
Residents recommended two safety improvements:
1) Paint the bike lanes green with white bike stencils.
2) Remove the roundabout.
If parents aren't letting their children bike to school, I highly doubt it's because of this segment.
East Meadow Drive, Palo Alto
Too much sprawl
In his letter to the editor on July 23, Linval DePass said that the Association of Bay Area Governments' (ABAG) plan for housing "has no concern for the severe drought that currently exists in California."
1: Water management in the state is a hot mess.
2: Nobody seems to be willing to consider recycling waste (sewer) water.
3: It's the sprawl that has exacerbated the climate change that is responsible for the severity of the drought in the first place.
By his own reasoning, DePass should be in favor of ABAG's plans.
Unlike DePass, I don't think solutions to our problems should be predicated upon people who already live in Palo Alto being allowed to continue to do so "comfortably." Neither, apparently, does ABAG. Besides, how is it anyone would decide that based on their ZIP code they have more rights to water than someone else? Eight billion humans on the planet and growing; yeah, water's a problem. But living in Palo Alto — or Los Altos, or Los Altos Hills or Menlo Park, etc. — doesn't give you more rights to it than other people.
Birch Street, Palo Alto
No to mask mandate
The answer to your July 23 question is an emphatic "No." Mandating indoor masking is a sure-fire way to encourage vaccine hesitancy. Democrat Party officials, both elected and unelected, started this trend. During last fall's campaign, then vice president candidate KamalaHarris said, "if Donald Trump tells us that we should take (the vaccine). I'm not taking it." When the election was over, she and Joe Biden changed their minds and got vaccinated but insisted on virtue, signaling by wearing masks for months afterward.
The latest reason for vaccine hesitancy is the return of mask requirements as announced in Los Angeles County. What better way to make people question the vaccine than to continue to insist on wearing a mask? Now unelected health bureaucrats in the Bay Area are once "recommending" masks for all indoors. Again, one must ask what is the point of getting vaccinated if the mask insanity will continue indefinitely?
Mount Hamilton Avenue, Los Altos
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